Posted on June 21, 2021
AT&T donated more than $1.1 million to anti-LGBTQ lawmakers
This Pride Month, as it always has, AT&T changed its corporate logo to a rainbow, issued statements for equality and tweeted out support for LGBTQ youth — all for a month-long marketing campaign.
But a stunning new report from Popular Information found that over the last two years AT&T donated $1,079,500 to anti-LGBTQ federal politicians, as well as $59,450 to state-level lawmakers who sponsored anti-trans bills that target LGBTQ youth.
These recent donations are in addition to the $2.755 million that AT&T donated to 193 anti-LGBTQ politicians in 2017 and 2018.
AT&T can tout its support for equality and inclusivity, but its millions in donations to right-wing bigots tell another story.
In its recent report, Popular Information found that 25 major corporations donated more than $10 million to anti-LGBTQ politicians who earned a zero rating on the Human Rights Campaign’s latest Congressional scorecard, which measures support for equality by lawmakers in Congress.
AT&T’s donation put the telecom giant near the top of the list of companies donating to lawmakers who scored zero, second only to Comcast:
The report also highlighted a business statement organized by HRC, signed by AT&T more than 130 other companies, opposing anti-LGBTQ legislation at the state level which explicitly called out attacks on trans youth, saying:
We are deeply concerned by the bills being introduced in state houses across the country that single out LGBTQ individuals – many specifically targeting transgender youth – for exclusion or differential treatment.
Yet, AT&T donated nearly $60,000 to anti-trans lawmakers in Arkansas ($12,950), Tennessee ($4,000), North Carolina ($5,000), Texas ($22,500), and Florida ($17,500) who sponsored anti-trans bills at the state level, some of which specifically target transgender youth.
These new revelations are disturbing, yet completely unsurprising. In 2019, we highlighted Judd Legum’s reporting that found AT&T had donated to $2.7 million to nearly 200 anti-LGBTQ politicians, like Sen. Marsha Blackburn, who supported Donald Trump’s ban on trans people in the military, regularly voted against protections for LGBTQ people and opposed marriage equality, and Ted Cruz, who co-sponsored a bill that would sanction discrimination by businesses against LGBTQ people and urged states to ignore the Supreme Court’s ruling affirming marriage equality.
AT&T has a long history of being on the wrong side of history. The company donated millions to Donald Trump and hired his criminal associates. It lobbied Congress for massive tax breaks to create jobs, then laid off workers. It donated $200,000 to anti-abortion politicians. The company even helped re-elect a white supremacist.
Here at CREDO, we don’t support anti-LGBTQ politicians – and we never will.
In fact, CREDO donates to organizations fighting for LGBTQ rights like the Transgender Law Center and the National LGBTQ Task Force. In total, CREDO members have helped us contribute nearly $15 million to groups fighting for civil rights and equality.
And unlike AT&T and other major carriers, we don’t plaster a rainbow flag on our logo during Pride Month – because we don’t need to. We stand with the LGBTQ community all year long.
This month, our allies at Freedom for All Americans, who are fighting to pass the Equality Act in Congress, are on our June donations ballot. Take a minute to drop them a vote at CREDOdonations.com.
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